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Rare Bioluminescent Underwater Creatures: Vampire Squid, Dumbo Octopus, Anglerfish And Other Glowing Animals (PHOTOS/VIDEOS)

First Posted: 12/03/10 08:19 AM ET   Updated: 05/25/11 07:15 PM ET

From BBC Earth's Arj Singh:

As we approach winter, the nights start drawing in and the days become darker, it seems like the perfect time of year to celebrate light.

That's what happens during the religious festivals of Hanukkah and Diwali and we at BBC Earth wanted to have a celebration of our own.

We've turned to the beauty of light in nature for inspiration, and picked some of our favorite bioluminescent animals.

These strange, wonderful and rare creatures actually emit light. Whether it's from 'fishing rods' coming out of their heads or from squirted protective 'ink', the phenomenon certainly brightens up our days...

[You can find more great nature stories like this one, win DVDs and participate in a competition that could see your photos on our site over on our Facebook page.]

Sea Gooseberries
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These weird predators look more like something you’d find in a novelty electrical store than planktonic ocean life but they are one of the most amazing examples of bioluminescence.

Sea gooseberries use their two long, trailing tentacles to fish for prey. Their bodies are virtually transparent and rows of tiny cilia catch the light, producing rainbow-like colors and turning the waves into ocean rainbows.

Made up of 99 percent water, these comb jellies still manage to feed on other plankton.
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This Creature
Looks Like A Dead Flashlight
Lusciously Luminescent!

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Bioluminescent Animals
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Filed by Joanna Zelman  |